Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Ennai Kathirika or Stuffed Eggplant/ Brinjal Curry

Eggplant is one of my favourite veggies. Be it fried curry, baingan bartha, kathirika vathal kuzhambu or kathirika kootu; eggplant tastes yummy in all. Unlike me, my husband prefers eggplant only in certain ways. This recipe happens to be one of his favourites and that is reason enough for making it often.
Ingredients (Serves 2) 
Eggplant (small) – 10
Oil – 5 tbs (I recommend using gingelly oil as it enhances the taste of the curry)
Dhania seeds – 3 tbsps
Channa dal – 2 tbsps
Red chillies – 8 -10 (increase or decrease according to your spice level)
Peanuts – 1 tbsps
Tamarind extract – ¼ cup
Grated coconut – 3 tbsps
Salt to taste
Optional Ingredients

Garlic – 2 cloves
Ginger – ½ tsp grated
Cloves – ½ tsp                                   
Cardamom – ½ tsp                          
Cinnamon – ½ tsp
In a pan/kadai, heat 1 tbsp of oil. Add dhania seeds, channa dal, red chillies, and peanuts. Roast the above ingredients until they turn brown. Add coconut and sauté for a minute. Remove from the stove and allow it cool. Sauté cloves, cinnamon, cardamom, garlic and ginger in the pan and allow it cool. In a mixer, add the sautéed ingredients and grind into a fine powder. Add salt and mix well. The masala is now ready. 

Wash the brinjals and cut the stems. Make perpendicular slits on the cut brinjal heads. Do not cut until the bottom. Cut ¾ lengths of the brinjals.  Take liberal helpings of the ground masala and stuff the brinjals. In a kadai, heat oil and place the stuffed brinjals one-by-one. Sprinkle some masala on top after placing the brinjals. Pour the tamarind extract, cover and cook for 15-20 minutes on medium flame. Do not keep stirring the curry, as the brinjals will break. You can choose to have the gravy or cook until the gravy is soaked up completely. Enjoy this mouth-watering curry with rotis or rice.

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